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Friday, September 19, 2008

Shell eyes Russian Kalmykia fields

19 September, 2008 - Upstream OnLine - Shell is planning a new exploration project in Russia and is considering three oil fields in Kalmykia in the Urals as possible sites, a source familiar with the plans said today. "The fields require deep drilling, over 6 kilometres," the source said on the sidelines of an investment forum in Russia's southern city of Sochi to Reuters. Shell's representative in Russia declined to comment. The source said Shell has yet to acquire licences for the fields. A number of Russian oil companies have drilled the fields but failed to reach productive layers due to poor technology. Shell and the Kalmykia regional government last month signed a co-operation agreement allowing Shell to explore and develop oil resources. Shell has been trying to improve its position in Russia, after it had to cede control in major offshore project Sakhalin 2 to state-controlled Gazprom last year. Shell now owns 27.5% of Sakhalin 2. Shell also owns half of West Siberia's Salym project and plans to develop heavy oil deposits in the Volga region of Tatarstan jointly with mid-sized oil company Tatneft.

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